Gateron vs Cherry MX Mechanical Switches

Long gone are the days of mushy feeling membrane keyboards because most gamers now are using mechanical keyboards with mechanical switches that have become the industry standard.

No matter if the keyboard you are looking at is a budget keyboard, expensive, or wireless one, there are no good keyboards we would recommend that would be spared from that one criterion.

In this mechanical keyboard market, two big companies need to be mentioned – Cherry and Gateron. These two companies are the biggest producers of mechanical switches and today we will look at what they offer and how they compare to each other.

Gateron vs Cherry: General Differences

To start the discussion about which mechanical switches you should go for, we will initially look at the most prominent differences between the companies and the philosophy they implement when designing their products.

The Cherry MX switches are produced by Cherry in Germany and have been historically equivalent to the idea of long-lasting quality. Cherry was also the company that basically created the design of the modern mechanical switch, becoming the industry standard.

By comparison, Gateron is operating out of Southern China and is appealing to customers through its innovation and lower costs for its mechanical switches. Its recent cooperation with Zeal PC in creating the Zealio switch has created a lot of hype around the brand.

The biggest general differences between the Gateron switches vs Cherry MX switches are:

  • The Gateron switches are overall considered to be smoother with their switch focusing on little resistance and scratchiness for comfortable use. Cherry switches are known for their scratchier feel and stiffer resistance.
  • The Gateron switches have a higher actuation point which allows the users to type with a lighter stroke on the keyboard. The Cherry MX switches have a lower actuation point but this allows them to have a consistent feeling at all times.

In terms of durability, both companies advertise a lifespan of 50 million actuations which means that the probability of a switch dying on you is low.

Gateron Brown vs Cherry Brown Switches

The brown tactile switches are amongst the most popular switches on the market currently. The reason for that is simple – these switches offer a tactile bump without being as loud and obnoxious as a full tactile switch (blue switches). The Gateron brown switches are widely regarded as smoother than their Cherry counterparts with a better-defined actuation point.

A notable feature of the Cherry MX brown switches is the fact that they are much louder than the Gateron brown switches. Moreover, the Cherry MX brown is not only louder than their direct counterpart but also louder than a Gateron blue switch, which is a full tactical switch!

Gateron Red vs Cherry Red Switches

The red switches are linear switches that are marketed towards gaming since they have a lower actuation force making it a suitable switch for multiple quick key presses.

The Cherry and the Gateron red switches have the same technical specifications such as actuation force, travel, and feel but it is to be noted that the Gateron switch once again is boasting a smoother experience.

Even though the Cherry MX switch tends to be a bit scratchier the difference is minimal and most people would not be able to tell them apart, therefore, when buying a keyboard with these switches the Cherry MX red vs Gateron red debate does not matter much.

Gateron Blue vs Cherry Blue Switches

The blue switches are full tactile switches which means they produce the distinct click-clack sound with a very obvious tactile bump.

The Gateron blues have a lower actuation point and a sharper, more pronounced sound compared to Cherry switches. Meanwhile, the Cherry MX blues have a softer feel and are also known to have less switch wobble than their Gateron counterparts.

A very important aspect to note before purchasing any of the blue switches is that their distinct sound can be pleasant for you, but might be a huge inconvenience for the people around you, so choose your switch carefully!

Gateron Clear vs Cherry Clear Switches

If in all of the categories above the switches offered by both companies were similar, in the case of the clear switches the situation changes.

The Cherry MX clear switch is a heavy and tactile switch that requires more actuation force than a blue switch.

Meanwhile, a Gateron clear switch is the opposite story with it being an ultra-fast linear switch comparable to the Cherry MX Speed Silver switch.

Be careful when choosing between the clear variants of the switches so you do not end up with a completely different feel than intended!

Overall, your preference for mechanical switches will be defined by the main purpose of your keyboard.

If you are mainly focusing on playing games then linear switches will most likely suit you better, while if you are focusing on the typing experience, the tactile switches will impress you more.

And don’t forget gamers – if you are buying a keyboard with blue switches also purchase earplugs for everyone around you, otherwise your friends and family might start hating your new purchase!

About The Author

Chris Bulgac

Chris is a passionate gamer, streamer and PC tech enthusiast. The PC peripheral market has a special place in his heart, as there are few enthusiast-grade products that he has not tried, and even fewer products he has not researched already. Overall, Chris is a BIG nerd and he is absolutely proud of it! Follow him on Twitch.

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